Louisiana Colonial Records

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Online Records[edit | edit source]

History[edit | edit source]

Louisiana was claimed by France in 1682. Fort Mississippi was built in 1699, but there was little European settlement until after 1713. Louisiana was owned by private companies from 1712-1731 when the colony reverted to the French Crown. Upper and Lower Louisiana, west of the Mississippi, were ceded to Spain in 1762, while the rest of Louisiana was ceded to Great Britain and became parts of East and West Florida. Britain ceded the Floridas back to Spain in 1780, and the government was administered by the Captaincy General of Cuba. In 1802, Louisiana transferred back to the French, and then sold to the United States in 1803.[1]

Resources[edit | edit source]

Civil Records and Sources[edit | edit source]

From 1699-1805, military and local censuses were kept in Louisiana. The originals of these records are located at the Archivo General de Indias in Seville, Spain; the French National Archives, Section Outre-Mer, Paris; and the Archivo Nacional de Cuba in Havana, Cuba. The Louisiana State Archives in Baton Rouge, LA has copies of some of these records.[2] Because Spain and France were both predominately Catholic, records kept under both administrations, ecclesiastical and notarial, were kept in a similar fashion.[3]

French Colonization[edit | edit source]

  • Church and State in French Colonial Louisiana: Policy and Politics to 1732 by Charles Edwards O'Neill. (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1966).
  • General Correspondence of Louisiana: 1678-1763 by Dunbar Rowland. (1907. Reprint. New Orleans: Polyanthos, 1976).
  • Louisiane passages 1718-1724. (film 1305374).
  • Louisiana Marriage Contracts: A Compilation of Abstracts form Records of the Superior Council of Louisiana During the French Regime, 1725-1769 by Alice D. Forsyth. 2 Vols. (New Orleans: Polyanthos, 1980).
  • Marriage Contracts of French Colonial Louisiana by Henry P. Dart. (n.p.: Louisiana Historical Quarterly, 1934, film 141730).
  • The New Orleans French, 1720-1733: A Collection of Marriage Records Relating to the First Colonists of the Louisiana Province by Winston De Ville. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing CO., 1973).
  • Pest Ships, 1720-1721 by Alice D. Forsyth. (New Orleans: New Orleans Genealogical Research Society, 1969, fiche 6094099).Lists names of immigrants who were sent to Louisiana.
  • Recensements et correspondence général, censuses, and land grants during the French administration of Louisiana by Gouverneur-Général. (film 0108000).
  • The Settlement on the German Coast of Louisiana and the Creoles of German Descent by J. Hanno Deiler. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1970). Lists the names of Germans in the 1724 French census.

Spanish Colonization[edit | edit source]

  • Cabildo, Province of Louisiana. Original records are located at the Louisiana Historical Center in New Orleans, LA.
Acts and deliberations of the Cabildo, 1769-1803. (film 1309934).
Inventory of the records of the French Superior Council and judicial records of the Spanish Cabildo 1702-1803. (film 1306185).
Judicial records, 1769-1804. (film 1306185).
Petitions, decrees, and letters of the Spanish Cabildo, 1770-1803. (film 1309932)
Archives of the Spanish government of West Florida. (film 0327823). This includes probate, land, and notarial records from 1782-1810.
  • The Canary Islanders of Louisiana by Gilbert C. Din. (Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1988).
  • The Canary Islands Migration to Louisiana, 1778-1783: The History and Passenger Lists of the Islenos Volunteer Recruits and Their Families by Sidney Louis Villeré. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1972).
  • Index to the Archives of Spanish West Florida, 1782-1810 by Stanley Clisby Arthur. (New Orleans: Polyanthos, 1975).
  • Louisiana and Mississippi Lands: A Guide to Spanish Land Grants at the University of Michigan by Winston De Ville. (Ville Platte, LA: Evangeline Genealogical and Historical Society, 1985).
  • Marriage Contracts of the Attakapas Post, 1760-1803 by Winston De Ville. (Saint Martinville, LA: Attakapas Historical Association, 1966).

Ecclesiastical Records and Sources[edit | edit source]

Catholic church records in Louisiana date back to 1720, with the first church having been founded in 1700. The Diocese of New Orleans (previously called the Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas) was organized in 1793. The diocese covered French territory from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. Some of the original records are available at the Notre Dame Archives, Notre Dame University, South Bend, Indiana, and the Archivo Nacional de Cuba in Havana, Cuba. Catholic church records from the French administration period are located at the French National Archives, Section Outre-Mer, Paris and the National Archives of Canada in Ottawa, Ontario.[4]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Christina K. Schaefer, Genealogical encyclopedia of the colonial Americas : a complete digest of the records of all the countries of the Western Hemisphere (Baltimore, Maryland : Genealogical Publishing Company, c1998), 589. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 929.11812 D26 1998
  2. Christina K. Schaefer, Genealogical encyclopedia of the colonial Americas : a complete digest of the records of all the countries of the Western Hemisphere (Baltimore, Maryland : Genealogical Publishing Company, c1998), 589. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 929.11812 D26 1998
  3. Christina K. Schaefer, Genealogical encyclopedia of the colonial Americas : a complete digest of the records of all the countries of the Western Hemisphere (Baltimore, Maryland : Genealogical Publishing Company, c1998), 591. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 929.11812 D26 1998
  4. Christina K. Schaefer, Genealogical encyclopedia of the colonial Americas : a complete digest of the records of all the countries of the Western Hemisphere (Baltimore, Maryland : Genealogical Publishing Company, c1998), 589. WorldCat (Other Libraries); FHL book 929.11812 D26 1998